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Brother, Can You Spare $10,000?

Microlenders are filling in the financing gaps homebased businesses often fall through.

This story appears in the December 2000 issue of

Most homebased business owners--the successful ones anyway--have a financial plan in place well before they hang a shingle outside their front door announcing their new business. Many folks plan ahead so well that they have a savings in place specifically to finance their new business. Others may count on the financial support of family and friends, or rely on their good friends at Visa and MasterCard to fund their companies.

What hasn't always been available to homebased entrepreneurs is widespread access to the banks and community loan organizations that have traditionally helped small businesses on their feet. Homebased businesses don't usually require that much start-up capital--often less than $10,000 for equipment costs and start-up marketing--and so the role of organized financial institutions in homebased funding has been kept to a minimum.

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